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ebikes on the Shore

May 7, 2019, 1:05 p.m.
Posts: 1220
Joined: Sept. 30, 2006

Posted by: Ddean

Thanks Spandies - I get where you are coming from but I do not understand why or how a fit former Cat1/2 road racer needs an ebike to ride the climbing trails. Those trails were meant for the general population to pedal up on normal bikes, and I think that No Quarter takes a similar duration to go up as Mtn Hwy so it shouldn't be a timing thing. To me it sounds like you are exactly the type of person who does not need an ebike to access the trails.

I think that, while you sound like a well-reasoned person who Im sure is a great riding partner, your post supports many of the points those who are dead set against ebikes are trying to make. Im not against ebikes in general, probably because I realize that they will likely have a role in my future at some point (Im getting older and my kid is getting faster), but your post is a giant "I told you so" for the anti-ebike crowd.

Just as a point of order, Mountain Highway (from the yellow gate at the bottom) and No Quarter (from the tennis courts) are both about the same distance (~5km). There is no way (at least for me) that they take a similar amount of time to ascend. Id guess I would be at least 50% slower if not 100% (on a bad day) on the No Quarter climb vs Mountain Highway.

Doing that loop that was stated in 1hr 10 mins is crazy fast. Id be lucky to finish just NQ in that time. I know I am old and slow, but that just boggles my mind.


 Last edited by: shoreboy on May 7, 2019, 1:10 p.m., edited 3 times in total.
May 7, 2019, 1:30 p.m.
Posts: 534
Joined: Jan. 31, 2005

These recent exchanges have really helped this conversation along.

May 7, 2019, 1:49 p.m.
Posts: 813
Joined: Nov. 18, 2015

Up the climbing route or Mtn Hwy to 7th shouldn't be that different (in time).

No Quarter is 6km and 600m versus Mtn Hwy (from the lot) at 6.5km and 450m.

I guess on a relative basis NQ is harder 90% of the time and for 33% more elevation than Mtn Hwy, but absolute isn't horribly different in my eyes from a time perspective. One hurts way more than the other, but I don't think that Im getting up Mtn Hwy notably faster than up NQ - but I guess Im spinning my way up the Hwy with half a smile on my face while Im about to die by the time I hit Mtn Hwy via NQ.

Yeah, I cant imagine 1:10 for that ride. That's FLYING up NQ...Id be curious for someone to figure out the average speed required to do that ride in 70min. Assume decent 50% faster than ascent and I bet that's cooking up NQ in what, 10min? 5km in 10minutes is averaging 30kph up the climbing trail. Time to plot it out.

Perhaps Spandies can help us out with data? Far did you travel and how many kms were climbing versus how many were descending?


 Last edited by: Ddean on May 7, 2019, 1:54 p.m., edited 2 times in total.
May 7, 2019, 2:40 p.m.
Posts: 7
Joined: March 28, 2017

I don't own an ebike but I did demo one. I rode from LVB up to 7th, down to the bottom of Lower Expresso back up climbing trail to Executioner and back down to LVB in 1:45. By the time I made it back the battery was dead. I'm relatively fit and if I did that same loop on my normal bike it would take almost twice the time and my legs would have been pretty tired. I was not tired at all after the eride....could have done another lap if it wasn't for the dead battery.

It was definitely fun but I'm in no rush to go buy one.

May 7, 2019, 2:48 p.m.
Posts: 1220
Joined: Sept. 30, 2006

Posted by: Ddean

Up the climbing route or Mtn Hwy to 7th shouldn't be that different (in time).

No Quarter is 6km and 600m versus Mtn Hwy (from the lot) at 6.5km and 450m.

I guess on a relative basis NQ is harder 90% of the time and for 33% more elevation than Mtn Hwy, but absolute isn't horribly different in my eyes from a time perspective. One hurts way more than the other, but I don't think that Im getting up Mtn Hwy notably faster than up NQ - but I guess Im spinning my way up the Hwy with half a smile on my face while Im about to die by the time I hit Mtn Hwy via NQ.

Yeah, I cant imagine 1:10 for that ride. That's FLYING up NQ...Id be curious for someone to figure out the average speed required to do that ride in 70min. Assume decent 50% faster than ascent and I bet that's cooking up NQ in what, 10min? 5km in 10minutes is averaging 30kph up the climbing trail. Time to plot it out.

Perhaps Spandies can help us out with data? Far did you travel and how many kms were climbing versus how many were descending?

Trailforks has it at 14.2km for that route described. 848m of elevation gain, 872m elevation loss, 8km climbing, 6km descending and 400m flat.  Just over 12km/h average speed.

May 7, 2019, 2:58 p.m.
Posts: 813
Joined: Nov. 18, 2015

Thanks for gathering that - that's a lot slower than I would have guessed.

May 7, 2019, 3:04 p.m.
Posts: 1220
Joined: Sept. 30, 2006

Just for reference, I looked up the fastest recorded time up NQ (on an acoustic bike I assume).  Just under 29 minutes (12.8km/h).

May 7, 2019, 8:04 p.m.
Posts: 13
Joined: Nov. 1, 2017

Posted by: Ddean

Up the climbing route or Mtn Hwy to 7th shouldn't be that different (in time).

No Quarter is 6km and 600m versus Mtn Hwy (from the lot) at 6.5km and 450m.

I guess on a relative basis NQ is harder 90% of the time and for 33% more elevation than Mtn Hwy, but absolute isn't horribly different in my eyes from a time perspective. One hurts way more than the other, but I don't think that Im getting up Mtn Hwy notably faster than up NQ - but I guess Im spinning my way up the Hwy with half a smile on my face while Im about to die by the time I hit Mtn Hwy via NQ.

Yeah, I cant imagine 1:10 for that ride. That's FLYING up NQ...Id be curious for someone to figure out the average speed required to do that ride in 70min. Assume decent 50% faster than ascent and I bet that's cooking up NQ in what, 10min? 5km in 10minutes is averaging 30kph up the climbing trail. Time to plot it out.

Perhaps Spandies can help us out with data? Far did you travel and how many kms were climbing versus how many were descending?

I feel that the Mountain Highway climb to be much easier to ascend than the NQ route, even given similar distance and elevation gain. You can cook up it pretty well with rhythm if you felt good, whereas the NQ route is filled with turns, and well, tech climbing. 

As for the data, just looked at my bike. Please see below:

Ride time: 1:11 (I assume only moving time)

Distance: 17.5km

Avg: 14.7 km/h

Max: 36.5 km/h (Assist cuts out around -31ish)

I wasn't going that fast on the NQ. I made up my time on Mtn Hwy; Max speed was probably on the flat between 4-5th switchback IIRC. I was going quick (for me) on the downhills, I essentially rode nonstop. My legs were pretty beat at the end but then again, I wanted to go fast and feel some discomfort. Battery was down 2 bars (3/5 remaining) when I got back to the car. And no, I don't do the Strava/Socialmedia thing. Discuss. 

Thanks for being open to the discussion guys.

May 8, 2019, 12:19 p.m.
Posts: 5
Joined: April 22, 2017

Posted by: oldmanbuilder

Posted by: D-man

So you know for a fact all ebikers are noobs and haven't put shovels in the ground? That's Just like hikers saying all bikers tear up the sacred forests. 

With attitudes like yours new people will not come forward to help because they risk being ridiculed for riding an ebike. 

Trail associations need to welcome ebikes and their riders to help inform them on etiquette etc.

experienced people riding e-bikes  will be a drop in the bucket when the flood of new riders comes.  we're talking hundreds to thousands of new riders.  how are a few old-school people going to influence that? 

trail associations do not need to welcome e-bikes.  still waiting for the e-bikers to start their own associations.  oh wait, they just want to ride on the backs of the people who got us this far, without actually putting any work in.

my attitude is based upon years in the sport, and years of digging on the trails.  i don't really care how it's perceived.

Hundreds of thousands? Holy fuck man you are really grasping here. 

Your attitude will only keep you angry because ebikers are not going away. I have built trails, started our local trail association and enjoy ebikes. Definitely not riding on anyone's hard work other than my own. 

May 8, 2019, 12:39 p.m.
Posts: 1540
Joined: Feb. 26, 2015

From their webpage.

WORCA advocates for non-motorised mountain biking. WORCA considers e-bikes motorized vehicles. E-bikes are not included at WORCA events as our insurance will not cover their use. E-bikes are still in the evolutionary stage and management plans are not yet established. Some clear issues stand out which have not fully been evaluated. The facts are that they allow more people to travel farther and quicker into places they could not so easily access before. This potentially opens up a number of concerns around user conflict, trail safety, and damage to trails that WORCA is keen to monitor and re-evaluate if necessary based on authentic studies or assessment of on-trail conditions. E-bike riders are directed to be extra considerate on public trails and be aware that faster speeds in all directions is a concern for collisions on 

All those who volly their time have enough to do. It's not the trail assns duty to integrate motorbikes into a non motorized riding area. So I guess we will see how it all pans out. I know people on a couple different trail  assns boards that have had enough of this headache and are pretty much done vollying their time. Which is a shame they have done so much, it's thankless work. But you know entitlement rules these days.

May 8, 2019, 1:30 p.m.
Posts: 1570
Joined: July 11, 2014

Posted by: Brocklanders

From their webpage.

WORCA advocates for non-motorised mountain biking. WORCA considers e-bikes motorized vehicles. E-bikes are not included at WORCA events as our insurance will not cover their use. E-bikes are still in the evolutionary stage and management plans are not yet established. Some clear issues stand out which have not fully been evaluated. The facts are that they allow more people to travel farther and quicker into places they could not so easily access before. This potentially opens up a number of concerns around user conflict, trail safety, and damage to trails that WORCA is keen to monitor and re-evaluate if necessary based on authentic studies or assessment of on-trail conditions. E-bike riders are directed to be extra considerate on public trails and be aware that faster speeds in all directions is a concern for collisions on 

All those who volly their time have enough to do. It's not the trail assns duty to integrate motorbikes into a non motorized riding area. So I guess we will see how it all pans out. I know people on a couple different trail  assns boards that have had enough of this headache and are pretty much done vollying their time. Which is a shame they have done so much, it's thankless work. But you know entitlement rules these days.

UROC in Cumberland (re: Cumberland Community Forest lands):

One of the United Riders of Cumberland’s core purposes is to advocate for non-motorized trail use on privately owned lands. The agreement reached with the private landowners around Cumberland in 2015 specifically grants access for non-motorized, recreational use of the trails and for motorized access when necessary for events or trail work. While we understand that there are many variants of electric assist bikes (e-bikes), UROC considers them to be motorized and does not support their use on the Cumberland trail network at this time.

https://unitedridersofcumberland.com/uroc-policy-e-bikes/

For me it always comes back to enforcement. Spandies in an earlier post wondered about trail association education/signage, making some trails/routes no-ebikes so the argument could be made why not designate climb trails like GSM/NQ as no-ebike and basically restrict them to climbing roads/FSRs? Well the problem is enforcement. Who exactly are we expecting to police that, prevent people from chipping ebikes to 50km/h or adding throttles etc. This is why outright ban as they have done on many public/BLM lands in the U.S. is the most practical approach. Of course the industry has pimped these things hard enough that it's probably too late for that approach but it is by far the easiest one to make. Ebikers can then form their own advocacy group and campaign for trail access.

May 9, 2019, 11:22 a.m.
Posts: 172
Joined: March 14, 2017

e-bikers won't form any advocacy group unless they get banned. Even then, how you going to enforce?  

Until batteries get way better, I can't see people chipping their ebikes. Even in Trail mode, battery power doesn't last too long.  In Boost mode, it would be really hard to navigate up some trails.

It really boils down to the rider responsibility.

May 9, 2019, 12:32 p.m.
Posts: 534
Joined: Jan. 31, 2005

Posted by: LoamtoHome

e-bikers won't form any advocacy group unless they get banned. Even then, how you going to enforce?

Until batteries get way better, I can't see people chipping their ebikes. Even in Trail mode, battery power doesn't last too long. In Boost mode, it would be really hard to navigate up some trails.

It really boils down to the rider responsibility.

Totally. For me the big sell was to self-shuttle, not just up the hill but across town. I was intrigued by the prospect of not driving to ride.

Until a bit of research revealed that most ebikes would barely get my 220lbs from home in East Van over to one North Shore mountain up down and home again on a single charge. While here I was thinking I could skip the car and ride two mountains when I'd most likely end up hauling this 50lb bike with my truck as usual.


 Last edited by: craw on May 9, 2019, 12:33 p.m., edited 1 time in total.
May 9, 2019, 8:44 p.m.
Posts: 13
Joined: Nov. 1, 2017

Posted by: craw

Posted by: LoamtoHome

e-bikers won't form any advocacy group unless they get banned. Even then, how you going to enforce?

Until batteries get way better, I can't see people chipping their ebikes. Even in Trail mode, battery power doesn't last too long. In Boost mode, it would be really hard to navigate up some trails.

It really boils down to the rider responsibility.

Totally. For me the big sell was to self-shuttle, not just up the hill but across town. I was intrigued by the prospect of not driving to ride.

Until a bit of research revealed that most ebikes would barely get my 220lbs from home in East Van over to one North Shore mountain up down and home again on a single charge. While here I was thinking I could skip the car and ride two mountains when I'd most likely end up hauling this 50lb bike with my truck as usual.

Agreed about the 'chipped' ebikes. For the pedelecs, even though you can chip it doesn't mean you'd want to. I've ridden one, it takes a good amount of wattage to spin it up to 50km/h even on pavement and the battery won't last very long. Good to brag about, not actually very functional in practice. 

For the self-shuttling, also my 'ideal' as well. Could be a market for a certain shop to offer battery charging/battery storage services. I'd love to ride from Vancouver on one battery and a set of slicks, swap at the base of mountain highway, do a loop, swap back and roll home. Much better than dealing with traffic, probably faster depending on time of day. One can dream.

May 9, 2019, 11:31 p.m.
Posts: 1172
Joined: Nov. 8, 2003

Dismayed to discover during yesterdays ride that both the guys who ride e-bikes at my local (highly sensitive) trail have now pulled the cranks off. 🤢

Just throttle.

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